Amy K. Bormet’s fourth annual Washington Women in Jazz Festival kicks off on March 15 with vocalist Integriti Reeves at Bohemian Caverns.

“Four” Is More for Washington Women in Jazz Festival

More than 30 women have been showcased by the Washington Women in Jazz Festival (WWJF) in just the first three years, ranging from jazz legend Geri Allen to the annual Young Artists contest that brings together the very best young female jazz musicians, declares the Washington Women in Jazz Festival website.

More enriching and enlivening of the area jazz scene is in store this March for Women’s History Month, with the fourth annual festival featuring Jessica Boykin-Settles doing a tribute to Shirley Horn, trumpeter Carol Morgan with the Bohemian Caverns Jazz Orchestra, saxophonist Leigh Pilzer doing a tribute to Melba Liston, and edgy guitarist Mary Halvorson playing with a group that includes the festival founder, pianist Amy K. Bormet.

“I'm so thrilled to present the fourth year of DC's finest jazz women,” says Bormet. “Every year the festival generates support from the DC community and brings out the best in our unique music scene. Drummer Allison Miller is returning for our gala show Wednesday night [March 19] with the all-stars and special guest guitarist Mary Halvorson.”

Vocalist Integriti Reeves starts things off with an opening night show, March 15, at Bohemian Caverns. See www.washingtonwomeninjazz.com for complete information. Also this month, check out the Transparent Jazz Productions performance of Jen Chapin, March 16, at Bohemian Caverns, and Double Time Jazz with Shana Tucker, March 21, at THEARC Theater (www.thearcdc.org) in Southeast Washington, and also Twins Jazz’s “Women In Jazz Series at the famed U Street club every Sunday. See www.twinsjazz.comfor details.

InPerson … Nelson Mandela Tribute Concert

A star-studded tribute concert last month for the recently departed Nelson Mandela drew a large crowd at Cramton Auditorium on the campus of Howard University, with headliners trumpeter Hugh Masekela and pianist Larry Willis delivering vintage performances. Also in fine form were vocalist Akua Allrich and Howard University’s award-winning Afro Blue vocal ensemble.

The highlight was Masekela’s storytelling, particularly his relating his time in New York during his early years, when he met Willis, and when he was told by many people, including Harry Belafonte and Miles Davis, that he should be playing more of his South African music while also playing the bebop that he had come to love. Masekela said Miles told him, “If you put together your stuff from your country, and the stuff that we are playing, you would really have something.” Actually, Masekela brought the house down laughing because he told the story in Miles’ own words, flavored with Miles’ off-color language.

InPerson … Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival

Saxophonist and educator Paul Carr’s fifth annual Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival in Rockville drew good crowds for some fine performers including Carr himself with his group that did a tribute to the late pianist Mulgrew Miller. Other highlights included performances by guitarist Josh Bayer, vocalists Kristin Callahan and Vanessa Rubin, the Howard University Jazz Ensemble and special guest alto saxophonist Bobby Watson, and the legendary saxophonist and composer Benny Golson, a witty and humorous storyteller himself.


March Highlights:Women In Jazz Series, March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, Twins Jazz ... Howard University Jazz Ensemble w/Hubert Laws, March 6, HU Rankin Chapel ... Double Time Jazz/Snarky Puppy, March 7, THEARC Theater ... Kenny Rittenhouse Quintet w/Darden Purcell, March 7, Westminster Presbyterian Church ... Akua Allrich, March 8, Atlas Performing Arts Center … Lisa Sokolov Duo, March 9, Bohemian Caverns ... Eldar Trio, March 12, Blues Alley ... Charles Rahmat Woods Trio, March 12, 26, Maggiano’s Restaurant … 4 Generations of Miles: Jimmy Cobb-Mike Stern, March 13, Blues Alley ... Jazz Masters with Charles Covington, March 14, Westminster Presbyterian Church ... Sine Qua Non, March 14, Bohemian Caverns ... Integriti Reeves, March 15, Bohemian Caverns ... Jessica Boykin-Settles presents Shirley Horn, March 16, Anacostia Community Museum ... Carol Morgan with BCJO, March 17, Bohemian Caverns ... Mary Halvorson, Allison Miller, Sarah Hughes, Amy Bormet, March 19, Union Arts ... Leigh Pilzer Tribute to Melba Liston, March 20, Smithsonian American Art Museum ... Craig Handy, March 21-22, Bohemian Caverns ... Kevin Eubanks, March 20-23, Blues Alley ... Double Time Jazz/Shana Tucker, March 21, THEARC Theater ... Shannon Gunn and the Bullettes, March 21, Westminster Presbyterian Church ... UDC JazzALIVE Forum/Dr. Arthur C. Dawkins, March 24 … UDC Greater U Street Jazz Collective, March 27, Twins Jazz ... Antonio Parker Jazz Quintet, March 28, Westminster Presbyterian Church ... Tim Whalen, March 28-29, Twins Jazz ... Steve Davis and Larry Willis Quintet, March 30, Caton Castle/Baltimore

March Birthdays: Benny Powell 1; Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Doug Watkins 2; Jimmy Garrison 3; Ricky Ford 4; Wes Montgomery 6; George Coleman 8; Herschel Evans, Ornette Coleman 9; Bix Biederbecke 10; Leroy Jenkins, Bobby McFerrin 11; Terence Blanchard 13; Quincy Jones 14; Cecil Taylor, Charles Lloyd 15; Tommy Flanagan 16; Nat King Cole 17; Harold Mabern, Charles Thompson 21; George Benson 22; King Pleasure 24; Ben Webster, Sarah Vaughan 27; Thad Jones 28; Michael Brecker 29; Freddie Green 31 

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